Jaqui's Daily Blog

The Curious Case of the Dead Elephants

It is perfectly possible that I may have made a major error of judgement. I shall allow you, my readers, the doubtful pleasure of deciding whether I have or not.


It started when Mr B informed me that from Thursday to Sunday this week (that’s inclusive, by the way) he would be out in Augusta, Georgia. In spirit that is.  While his body may be comfortably ensconced in his favourite armchair, the one nearest the fire with a good view of the TV, his heart is out there with the best golfers in the world on the fairways of The Augusta National as The Masters unfolds in all its triumphs and disasters. 


Now I am remembering another golf tournament, about six years ago when I was home recovering from shoulder surgery.  With little else to entertain me in those long days of recuperation, I found myself joining Mr B in watching as the drama was played out on the greens and the fairways and (best of all) in the bunkers. What’s more I rather enjoyed it. At least I think I did, provided my memory is not playing tricks on me.


So I have decided that watching this latest tournament along with him will be marginally preferable to the prospect of four days of armchair golf widowhood. Particularly if at the same time I start off on another Knitting Project so that I don’t feel as if I am wasting my time. Mr B looks at me in despair: how could watching The Masters ever be seen as a waste of time? I can hear him chiding me.


Anyway it’s all about togetherness, isn’t it? Or, to put it another way, if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em.  Well I don’t know about togetherness but we nearly fell out over the first hole.  Prepared as I was for today’s bully-off or kick-off or whatever it is they do in golf, I didn’t realise that last night we were going to have to watch a kind of “ice-breaker” called the Par 3. Complete with lots of celebrity interviews which were (i) boring; (ii) repetitive; and (iii) incomprehensible to one such as me. Mr B and the various commentators all said, unconvincingly, that this was “great fun.”  This is what some would call “taking the Mickey” bearing in mind it’s not what I signed up for. I committed myself to four days of scorching power play, starting on Thursday and finishing on Sunday.  Sneaking in a Wednesday evening on top was pretty poor form. Mr B was unrepentant.


Today I decided to prepare myself by becoming a little better informed. So I read a newspaper article entitled “Billy Foster’s three crucial holes.”  Billy Foster, in case you didn’t know, used to caddie for Seve Ballesteros and Lee Westwood. Presumably not at the same time. I chose this particular article because it was accompanied by diagrams and charts which I thought might be more instructive to a novice. I have to say that enlightenment was slow in coming.


Listen to Billy Boy's description of the challenges of the 14th hole, aka Chinese Fir: “If you are a foot short with the approach you are facing a dead elephant and an almost certain bogey.” I know what a bogey is but, please can anyone tell me, what’s with the elephant? Even if the poor thing is dead?  What’s more, there’s another one, out on Magnolia (that’s Hole 5 to anyone who is vaguely interested.) Our Billy starts off quite poetically: “The wind shifts in the trees.” That sort of thing. Then, in the very next line: “There is a dead elephant under the first 14 yards of the green.” For heaven’s sake, where have they all come from, these dead elephants. Who or what killed them and what are they doing out there on the beautiful Georgian Greens of Augusta?  Is “the elephant on the fairway” anything like “the elephant in the room”?


I shall have to watch closely as the drama is played out over the next few days. Mr B will be impressed by my steadfastness and staying power.


I won’t tell him that I’m looking for the elephants...

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Latest comments

23.04 | 20:15

lovely and heartwarming - an inspiration to us all x

09.03 | 12:07

Love this story told as ever beautifully.x

10.11 | 21:31

What a super account of a special event. I loved meeting you last night and seeing your creation come together. I’m so pleased you got so much from the activity

07.09 | 13:17

I have broad shoulders x

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